Dear Aunty B,
Six months ago we employed a very flamboyant marketing manager who, to welcome his own arrival, bought a few bottles of wine and opened them at about 4pm one Friday. He then continued to “celebrate” his arrival by bringing in two bottles of wine every Friday. Apparently he complained about the cost, as I recently found out that we are now buying the wine out of petty cash! Plus last week the wine got opened at 2pm!!!
It is now seen as “part of our culture” and I am hesitant to stop it, as my staff do keep working rather than go out for a long lunch. We also work in the “creative” industry so we are not 9-to-5.
But I am finding myself annoyed by this. I am also annoyed that it’s not just my company that downs tools on Friday.
Our web developers refuse to do any testing Friday afternoon, our suppliers put orders off until Monday, and I also find a lot of emails not answered until the next week.
In fact the only people I reckon who do any business on Friday afternoon are Australia’s pubs.
So first Aunty B, do you think I am a wowser?
Second, should we rename Friday Slackday?
Third, should bosses have to pay for Friday afternoon when there is such an obvious drop in productivity?
Got anything else to get off your chest? No? OK.
First, are you a wowser? Of course you are. You are an employer and we are all wowsers!
In fact we should start a wowser club and entry is a commitment to do business on Friday afternoon. Bugger price or quality. You deliver Friday afternoon and you are hired.
Should we expect our staff to work Friday afternoon? Of course we should.
But Jo, you are not asking the most obvious question. Should I let my staff get sozzled at 2pm on Friday? No, you should not. It’s simple. You call in your happy chappy marketing manager and you tell him he’s been here six months and it’s time to STEP UP. So there is no need to keep celebrating his arrival and 2pm is way out of line. You then go and tell the keeper of petty cash that the wine stops now.
Then you coincide all this with a very busy Friday afternoon that includes several meetings and new proposals. Then at 5pm, you declare what a great afternoon’s work everyone has done but it’s time to clear the decks. Then you leave, making it clear you are a considerate boss who values the fact that your employees are going safely home to their families (sober.)
So we won’t rename Friday as Slackday. We rename it Wackday – a metaphoric clip across the ear for all the slackers.
How’s that for being a wowser?
Have a great weekend!
Your Aunty B,